March 14, 1944 – October 16, 2016
Bob Hartman was a school teacher with a passion for growing fruit trees and caring for honey bees. Over more than 30 years the Western Cascade Fruit Society and countless others benefited from his fruit-growing knowledge and his friendship. He started his fruit tree nursery as a hobby, accumulating tree knowledge through reading, talking to experts and going on horticulture tours. After retiring he devoted his full time to the nursery in the backyard of his Puyallup home. He filled the two-acre space with more than 40 varieties of apples, 70 types of pears, plus Asian pears, plums, and cherry trees. Part of the nursery was divided into rows of espaliered trees. Another section of rows featured the “slender spindle” method of growing. His nursery specialized in fruit trees grown for Western Washington home growers. He only grew rootstocks and varieties that had been tested and proven to be compatible with our Puget Sound climate. If it wouldn’t thrive here, he didn’t have it.
What made the Hartman Nursery special was how Bob would typically spend over an hour with each visitor to his nursery discussing the many considerations in selecting a tree that would best suit the customer’s current and future needs. It was this care and the way he shared his love of fruit trees that made him a very special person.
With the permission of his family, we have included useful information formerly found on the Hartman Nursery website in this resources section of the WCFS site. We hope that Bob’s love for teaching others can continue on through these pages.
**The nursery’s last operating day was December 17, 2016**